Going as soon as, going twice … SC cotton gin’s belongings up for public sale in chapter case | Enterprise

The final bits and items of a historic cotton enterprise that served South Carolina farmers for many years will probably be up on the market beginning this week as a chapter court docket trustee appears to recoup cash for Rickenbaker Gin’s collectors, together with practically $6.5 million owed to the S.C. Department of Agriculture.

An on-line public sale that includes land, tools, autos and a cell house is scheduled to run June 22-28, with bids accepted on the J.R. Dixon Auctions web site. Kevin Campbell, a Mount Pleasant lawyer who’s trustee in Rickenbaker Gin’s chapter liquidation, employed the Sumter public sale home — together with actual property firms Jackson L. Cobb & Associates of Columbia and Harbins Two Inc. of the Isle of Palms — to get rid of the corporate’s belongings.

Rickenbaker Gin home

This 975-square-foot house that after housed seasonal employees for Rickenbaker Gin is amongst gadgets that will probably be auctioned to assist pay the corporate’s collectors in a chapter liquidation case. J.R. Dixon Auctions/Provided

Rickenbaker Gin, positioned in tiny Davis Station in Clarendon County, has reported belongings totaling about $1.3 million towards money owed of greater than $8 million. Most of the cash is owed to the state Agriculture Department, which bailed out dozens of cotton and grain farmers who had employed the corporate to dealer the sale of their crops.

Department spokeswoman Eva Moore mentioned the company has not but recovered any of the cash it is owed, and it isn’t clear how a lot is perhaps left over after commissions and different sale bills. The chapter property will get 10 % of the proceeds off the highest. The public sale and actual property companies will break up one other 15 %.

There are additionally mortgages tied to a number of the property being bought — collateral for a financial institution and a number of the high-interest loans gin proprietor Burchell “Burt” Rickenbaker obtained from longtime household good friend J.C. Black. Campbell is disputing the mortgages, however their validity must be decided in court docket earlier than any proceeds will be distributed to collectors. There are additionally deed restrictions on a big parcel to be bought that ban a number of forms of companies — together with Walmart, drug shops and low cost retailers — from occupying the positioning.

Rafe Dixon, proprietor of the public sale firm, referred inquiries to Campbell, who couldn’t be reached for remark.

Among the gadgets to be bought at public sale are:

  • A 30.5-acre tract of farmland, which incorporates deed restrictions.
  • A 975-square-foot house on a half-acre lot that after housed seasonal employees.
  • A 1987 Fleetwood cell house.
  • About a dozen vans, trailers and a salvaged John Deere tractor.
  • Contents of an workplace constructing, together with desks, chairs, submitting cupboards, a copier and a printer.
  • Grain bins, overhead seed homes and cotton-ginning tools.

Rickenbaker Gin mobile home

A 1987 Fleetwood cell house is among the many belongings to be auctioned beginning June 22 to assist pay Rickenbaker Gin’s collectors in a chapter liquidation case. J.R. Dixon Auctions/Provided

The public sale follows a report by court-appointed examiner George DuRant that outlines years of questionable monetary dealings at Rickenbaker Gin, together with undocumented, high-interest loans to prop up operations and property transfers that had been in comparison with a “shell game” as collectors began demanding their cash.

Rickenbaker, son of the corporate’s founder, has been answerable for the gin since 2011. DuRant, in his report, mentioned Rickenbaker has offered little assist in piecing collectively the corporate’s funds.

A legal investigation into the gin’s funds was dropped in November when the third Circuit Solicitor’s Office declined to prosecute a case offered by the State Law Enforcement Division.

Rickenbaker Gin was based in 1945.

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Reach David Wren at 843-937-5550 or on Twitter at @David_Wren_

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